The Maison du Krewe storefront in New York City's Meatpacking District
Some boutiques offer sparkling water or even a glass of bubbly while you peruse, but New Orleans-born optical brand Krewe is taking that to the next level with their just-opened Maison du Krewe in New York City’s Meatpacking District at 67 Gansevoort Street. Spanning a nearly 6,500-square-foot historic 1800s townhouse, at the mezzanine at the end of the ground floor is &HOLIDAY, a natural wine bar. Splitting Machine Knives
“There are so many reasons to visit great European cities; there is always a hit list of retail spaces that are a must-visit,” says Krewe Founder and Creative Director Stirling Barrett. “I knew New Orleans should have destination retail worth visiting. When the brand is a place, how you represent yourself in a space becomes very important. We’ve always unofficially been on that list—but we wanted to make it official and take things to another level. That’s why Maison du Krewe was originally born, starting with the French Quarter location (that has just opened its doors; the hospitality components are still underway). Maison du Krewe in New York is an extension of this. Having this presence in New York is giving the brand another home, shared between NOLA and NYC.”
The undulating curved wall inside Maison du Krewe in New York City
KREWE acquired the building in December 2021 and plans to develop all four floors. The ground floor consists of the store, natural wine bar and cellars and a back-of-house area. The basement will be home to a lens cutter and edger to fulfill prescriptions, as well as a fulfillment center that will soon offer same-day delivery in New York City. A side entrance leads to the two top floors that will serve as their New York City headquarters for their growing team, a satellite product design studio, and events space and guest quarters.
The name &HOLIDAY is a reflection of Maison du Krewe itself. “It was born from the idea of community and connection,” Barrett says. “The name is inspired by the feeling of being on holiday. The memorable moments often center around the people you are with and creating a memory over a glass of wine, a meal.”
The mezzanine leading to &HOLIDAY
A bartender will walk guests through the wine menu, which will rotate every few weeks. Small bites will also be served. “My goal is to always create an inclusive and unpretentious experience for guests,” says Toussaint Stackhouse, Wine Director of &HOLIDAY. “Wine can be intimidating, with all the language and history, and breadth of options. It’s imperative to be approachable and non-judgmental. There is an abundance of natural wine programs in this city, which is awesome, but things can become redundant. My goal is to introduce folks to lesser-known producers, underexposed regions and indigenous grapes that most are unfamiliar with. We want to educate people, but not overwhelm—there shouldn’t be any pressure when enjoying wine.”
&HOLIDAY is meant as a place where people can relax, mix and mingle. “I love the uniqueness of the space,” Stackhouse says. “My partner Darby and I refer to it as a wine parlor. Hanging in the mezzanine truly feels like being in a friend’s living room. And we want everyone to feel at home, and leave knowing they were taken care of by loved ones. No one is a customer—everyone is family.”
&HOLIDAY inside Maison du Krewe
Thoughtfully designed to look and feel like a living room, the cozy lounge space is filled with vintage plush leather couches and a built-in banquette surrounding an open flame fireplace. “We leveled up with heavy hospitality at the back mezzanine by adding &Holiday,” says Olivia Erwin Rosenthal, founder of Olivia Erwin Interiors, who designed Maison du Krewe and has worked with Krewe on other stores and spaces. “A little surprise, a delight, to enter a store and have this welcoming you to the back to come sit and relax. This is very indicative of New Orleans as we are often walking to dinner or around during Mardi Gras and spontaneously invited into your neighbor’s home and end up having a great time and meeting great people. We love spontaneous fun!”
Then there’s the store itself, a bright and airy space where the full collection of Krewe optical and sunglasses are on display. A long, curved ombre hand-laid plaster display wall is a nod to their New Orleans store, where a similar version exists. “We design our stores in a muted way so our frames stand out vs. compete,” Barrett says. “That’s always been our goal. We love stones, we love brass, we love accents—the optical table is a consistent statement piece in all doors, same with the cash wrap. The store is designed in a way that you can flow and enjoy it. Your focus is the frames, but once you make your decision on the frames you start to notice the magic of the design and interact with the pieces that are more elevated. Less is more when it comes to art in our mind and that’s intentional. We choose the building because of the amazing natural light. Natural light is luxury and paramount to any of our flagships. To find it in New York City is special.”
&HOLIDAY inside Maison du Krewe
As part of their aesthetic, Krewe uses many of the same materials throughout their other stores. Every space has an open, airy feel, with unique pieces of furniture. Barrett’s favorite feature is the undulating curved wall. “As you enter the store, the wall gives way to the wine bar,” he says. “It’s the idea that there are two separate things living in one place and both incredibly important. The hidden secret in the back is the best part.” The New York City store also shares ombre paint affects, walnut cabinets, brass and stone with the New Orleans location.
The space is a mix of multiple design genres from different eras. For example, a 336-piece vintage mid-century modern Murano chandelier imported from Italy hangs over the bar, mingling with a metal accent chair from Singapore, 1960’s opal glass sconces by Glashutte Limburg of Germany and an original De Sede style 1970’s eight-piece tan leather modular sofa from Germany that was sourced from eBay. “For the chandelier, the sheer amount of glass tubes dangling from the massive fixture giving off a soft glowing light is a work of art,” Erwin Rosenthal says.
Maison du Krewe in New York City
Dry Leather Machine Maison du Krewe is meant to be much more than just a store. “The flagship space brings together all of the things that make Krewe, Krewe: Design, hospitality and community,” Barrett says. “We’ve always cared about making sure people feel welcome. In a city that's become our second home, hospitality is how we will build a community. &HOLIDAY’s living room, a fireplace and plush seating represent this. We hope to attract people that enjoy slowing down and savoring time together in the way that we do. I would live in this store.”